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Securities Tax Forms

The IRS requires all U.S. payers and withholding agents, such as Wells Fargo Securities, to obtain certain IRS tax forms from all clients. Without your proper tax forms, we must withhold taxes on reportable payments made to all accounts at rates set by law.
See the table below for the exact forms and supporting documentation we must receive from you.
For more information, call us at 1-800-645-3751 or email us at wfcustomerservice@wellsfargo.com.
Download the forms that apply to you or your organization. See our Forms Help and Requirements or FAQs for help completing your form.
EntityCategoryForms and instructionsDocumentation required with form
Individual or resident alienU.S. individualW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
None
Corporation U.S. corporationW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
None
LLC or disregarded entityU.S entityW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
See page 4 of the W-9 form
PartnershipU.S. partnershipW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
None
Simple trustU.S. simple trustW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
See page 4 of the W-9 form
Grantor trustU.S. grantor trustW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
See page 4 of the W-9 form
Complex trustU.S. complex trustW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
See page 4 of the W-9 form
Estate U.S. estateW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
None
GovernmentU.S. federal, state and municipalitiesW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
None
International organizationU.S. organizationsW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
None
Tax-exempt organizationU.S. tax-exempt organizationsW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
None
Private foundationU.S. private foundationW-9 form (PDF*)
W-9 instructions (PDF*)
None
Download the forms that apply to you or your organization. See our Forms Help and Requirements or FAQs for help completing your form.1
EntityCategoryForms and instructionsDocumentation required with form
Foreign individualForeign individual as beneficial ownerW-8BEN form (PDF*)
W-8BEN instructions (PDF*)
Depends on due diligence review
Foreign individual with effectively connected incomeW-8ECI form (PDF*)
W-8ECI instructions (PDF*)
U.S.-issued taxpayer ID number
Foreign corporation1 Foreign corporation as beneficial ownerW-8BEN form (PDF*)
W-8BEN instructions (PDF*)
Depends on due diligence review
Foreign corporation with effectively connected incomeW-8ECI form (PDF*)
W-8ECI instructions (PDF*)
U.S.-issued taxpayer ID number
Foreign disregarded entity Varies based on the type of beneficial owner of the disregarded entityW-8BEN form (PDF*)
W-8BEN instructions (PDF*)
Depends on due diligence review (see definition of “disregarded entity” in the Form W-8BEN instructions, page 3)
Foreign entity with effectively connected incomeW-8ECI form (PDF*)
W-8ECI instructions (PDF*)
U.S.-issued taxpayer ID number
Foreign partnershipWithholding foreign partnershipW-8IMY form (PDF*)
W-8IMY instructions (PDF*)
Withholding statement with tax pool
Non-withholding foreign partnershipW-8IMY form (PDF*)
W-8IMY instructions (PDF*)
  • Withholding statement with beneficial owners’ allocations
  • Proper IRS tax forms for each owner
Foreign simple trustForeign withholding simple trustW-8IMY form (PDF*)
W-8IMY instructions (PDF*)
Withholding statement with tax pools
Foreign non-withholding simple trustW-8IMY form (PDF*)
W-8IMY instructions (PDF*)
  • Withholding statement with beneficial owners’ allocations
  • Proper IRS tax forms for each owner
Foreign grantor trustForeign withholding grantor trustW-8IMY form (PDF*)
W-8IMY instructions (PDF*)
Withholding statement with tax pools
Foreign non-withholding grantor trustW-8IMY form (PDF*)
W-8IMY instructions (PDF*)
  • Withholding statement with beneficial owners’ allocations
  • Proper IRS tax forms for each owner
Foreign complex trustForeign complex trust as beneficial ownerW-8BEN form (PDF*)
W-8BEN instructions (PDF*)
Depends on due diligence review
Foreign complex trust with effectively connected incomeW-8ECI form (PDF*)
W-8ECI instructions (PDF*)
U.S.-issued taxpayer ID number
Foreign withholding trustW-8IMY form (PDF*)
W-8IMY instructions (PDF*)
Withholding statement with tax pools
Foreign estateForeign estate as beneficial ownerW-8BEN form (PDF*)
W-8BEN instructions (PDF*)
Depends on due diligence review
Foreign estate with effectively connected incomeW-8ECI form (PDF*)
W-8ECI instructions (PDF*)
U.S.-issued taxpayer ID number
Foreign governmentForeign government as beneficial ownerW-8BEN form (PDF*)
W-8BEN instructions (PDF*)
Depends on due diligence review
Foreign government with effectively connected incomeW-8ECI form (PDF*)
W-8ECI instructions (PDF*)
U.S.-issued taxpayer ID number
Foreign government claiming exemption from U.S. withholdingW-8EXP form (PDF*)
W-8EXP instructions (PDF*)
None
Foreign international organization Foreign international organization with effectively connected incomeW-8ECI form (PDF*)
W-8ECI instructions (PDF*)
U.S.-issued taxpayer ID number
Foreign international organization claiming exemption from U.S. withholdingW-8EXP form (PDF*)
W-8EXP instructions (PDF*)
None
Foreign central bank of issueForeign central bank of issue as beneficial ownerW-8BEN form (PDF*)
W-8BEN instructions (PDF*)
Depends on due diligence review
Foreign central bank of issue claiming exemption from U.S. withholdingW-8EXP form (PDF*)
W-8EXP instructions (PDF*)
None
Foreign tax-exempt organizationForeign tax-exempt organization as beneficial ownerW-8BEN form (PDF*)
W-8BEN instructions (PDF*)
Depends on due diligence review
Foreign tax-exempt organization with effectively connected incomeW-8ECI form (PDF*)
W-8ECI instructions (PDF*)
U.S.-issued taxpayer ID number
Foreign tax-exempt organization claiming exemption from U.S. withholdingW-8EXP form (PDF*)
W-8EXP instructions (PDF*)
Opinion letter from either IRS or U.S. counsel
Foreign private foundationForeign private foundation as beneficial owner claiming a treaty benefit W-8BEN form (PDF*)
W-8BEN instructions (PDF*)
Depends on due diligence review
Foreign private foundation with effectively connected incomeW-8ECI form (PDF*)
W-8ECI instructions (PDF*)
U.S.-issued taxpayer ID number
Foreign private foundation claiming exemption from U.S. withholding under IRC §1441, but acknowledging 4% excise tax withholding requirement from all U.S. source payments under IRC §1443(b)W-8EXP form (PDF*)
W-8EXP instructions (PDF*)
Depends on due diligence review
Government of U.S. possessionGovernment of U.S. possessionW-8EXP form (PDF*)
W-8EXP instructions (PDF*)
None
Foreign financial intermediary1 Qualified intermediary (QI)W-8IMY form (PDF*)
W-8IMY instructions (PDF*)
Withholding statement with tax pools
Non-qualified intermediary (NQI)W-8IMY form (PDF*)
W-8IMY instructions (PDF*)
  • Withholding statement with beneficial owners’ allocations
  • Proper IRS tax forms for each owner
U.S. branch of a non-U.S. entityU.S. branch with effectively connected incomeW-8ECI form (PDF*)
W-8ECI instructions (PDF*)
U.S.-issued taxpayer ID number
U.S. branch acting as a non-qualified intermediary (NQI)W-8IMY form (PDF*)
W-8IMY instructions (PDF*)
  • Withholding statement with beneficial owners’ allocations
  • Proper IRS tax forms for each owner
Instructions for the IRS Form W-8 and IRS Form W-9 can be complicated. The following information provides details on our due diligence requirements and key aspects of these forms.
Remember, we are required to withhold the maximum tax rate on payments if we do not have your proper tax forms.
  • Non-U.S. clients must provide one of the following W-8 forms: W-8BEN, W-8ECI, W-8EXP, or W-8IMY. Otherwise, we must withhold taxes on all U.S. source payments.
  • U.S. and resident alien clients must provide a W-9 form. Otherwise, we must apply backup withholding on all payments.

Processing the forms

After we receive your tax form, we will review it for accuracy and completeness and conduct our due diligence. We may be required to obtain additional documentation based on the information provided on the original form. Then we can implement the correct treaty or other special rates and conditions.

Completing the forms

The following requirements apply if you are not a U.S. citizen. You must provide the information described below for us to process your forms.
 W-8BENW-8ECIW-8EXPW-8IMY
Foreign individuals
  • Lines 1, 3, and 4 must be completed. If any of those lines are incomplete, a new form is required with those lines completed.
  • If your mailing address field is populated and contains a different country than your permanent address, or if a U.S. address is listed anywhere on the form, Wells Fargo must obtain one of the following: passport, government-issued ID, monthly bill, or other documents to show residency.
  • The form must be signed and dated, and the “Capacity in which acting” line may be left blank if you are the beneficial owner of the income. If you are signing on behalf of the beneficial owner, please provide documents supporting your capacity (for example, power of attorney).
  • Lines 1, 3-6, and 9 must be completed.
  • In order to receive exemption from withholding on income, the form must include a mailing address in the U.S., U.S. taxpayer ID number, and the type of income for which you are claiming the exemption (for example, portfolio interest, U.S. source dividends, fixed or determinable annual or periodic, etc.).
  • The form must be signed and dated, and the “Capacity in which acting” line may be left blank if you are the beneficial owner of the income. If you are signing on behalf of the beneficial owner, provide documents supporting your capacity (for example, power of attorney).
N/AN/A
Foreign non-individuals
  • Part I, lines 1-4 must be completed. If any of those lines are incomplete, you must provide a new form with those lines completed.
  • Wells Fargo must obtain Articles of Incorporation, a Certificate of Incorporation, or another document showing the location of the entity, if any of the following situations occur:
    • If line 2 (Country of Incorporation) is different than the country listed on line 4.
    • If the permanent address is in a different country than the mailing address.
    • If a U.S. address is listed on the form.
  • The W-8BEN must be signed, dated, and the signer must complete the “Capacity in which acting” line.
  • Lines 1-6 and line 9 must be completed.
  • In order to receive exemption from withholding on income, the form must include a mailing address in the U.S., U.S. taxpayer ID number, and the type of income for which you are claiming the exemption (for example, portfolio interest, U.S. source dividends, fixed or determinable, annual or periodic, etc.).
  • The form must be signed and dated, and the signer must complete the “Capacity in which acting” line.
  • Lines 1-4 must be completed.
  • Wells Fargo must obtain Articles of Incorporation, a Certificate of Incorporation, or another document showing the location of the entity if any of the following situations occur:
    • If line 2 (Country of Incorporation) is different than the country listed on line 4.
    • If the permanent address is in a different country than the mailing address.
    • If a U.S. address is listed on the form.
  • If a counsel opinion letter is required, send it along with the form.
  • The form must be signed and dated, and the signer must complete the “Capacity in which acting” line.
  • Lines 1-4 must be completed.
  • Wells Fargo must obtain Articles of Incorporation, a Certificate of Incorporation, or another document showing the location of the entity if any of the following situations occur:
    • If line 2 (Country of Incorporation) is different than the country listed on line 4.
    • If the permanent address is in a different country than the mailing address.
    • If a U.S. address is listed on the form.
  • All W-8IMY forms must be accompanied with a withholding statement that shows the actual beneficial owner’s information and income allocation.
  • For some types of intermediaries, the beneficial owner tax forms must be submitted with the form.
  • The W-8IMY form must be signed and dated.
Understanding the forms
FormForm descriptionPart IPart IIPart IIIParts IV - VII
W-8BENIdentifies you as a non-U.S. resident, and might allow you to receive a lower treaty rate set between the U.S. and participating countries.Identification of Beneficial Owner: Identifies the name, location, and type of beneficial owner. Note: Entities such as foreign grantor trusts, simple trusts, and partnerships would complete this form only to claim a treaty benefit. These types of intermediary entities complete a Form W-8IMY because these entities are not the beneficial owner of income. Claim of Tax Treaty Benefits: For income tax purposes, if beneficial owner is a resident of a treaty country, the beneficial owner may be able to claim lower tax treaty rates.Notional Principal Contracts: If applicable, this allows the beneficial owner to provide a statement identifying notional principal contracts for which income is not effectively connected.Part IV – Certification: All beneficial owners must sign and date the form. For Non-U.S. clients other than foreign individuals, the signer must complete the “Capacity in which acting line” after the signature and date.
W-8ECIIdentifies you as a non-U.S. resident whose income is deemed effectively connected with the conduct of a trade or business in the U.S. Typically, you must have a presence in the U.S. along with a tax identification number.Identification of Beneficial Owner: Identifies the name, type of entity, permanent location, mailing addresses, tax identification number, and types of income identified as effectively connected income. You must provide a U.S. tax ID number on Line 6.Certification: All beneficial owners must sign and date the form. For non-U.S. clients other than foreign individuals, the signer must complete the “Capacity in which acting” line after the signature and date.N/AN/A
W-8EXPIdentifies you as either a foreign government or other foreign organization.Identification of Beneficial Owner: Identifies the name, type of entity, and permanent location of the foreign government or foreign organization.Qualification Statement: Check the appropriate boxes to certify the type of entity indicated in Part I: foreign government, an international organization, a foreign central bank of issue, a foreign tax-exempt organization (Opinion Letter Required), or a government of a U.S. possession.Certification: An authorized official of the foreign entity must sign and date the form. In addition, the signer must complete the “Capacity in which acting” line after the signature and date.N/A
W-8IMYIdentifies you as a foreign intermediary, foreign flow-through entity, or, in some cases, as U.S. branches. This form indicates that you are not the beneficial owner of the taxable payments.Identification of Entity: Identifies the name, type of entity, permanent location of foreign intermediary, foreign flow-through entity, or U.S. branches.Qualified Intermediary: All qualified intermediaries (QIs) must complete this section, and a U.S. tax identification number must be provided on Line 6.Non-Qualified Intermediary: All Non-qualified intermediaries (NQIs) must complete this section. In addition, the NQI must provide the required documents and a withholding statement for each beneficial owner it represents.Part IV – Certain United States Branches: U.S. branches of a foreign bank or insurance company acting as an intermediary should complete this section. In addition, the branch or insurance company may be required to provide Wells Fargo with the required documents for each beneficial owner it represents and a withholding statement.

Part V – Withholding Foreign Partnership or Withholding Foreign Trust: Withholding foreign partnerships and withholding foreign trusts must complete this section. In addition, a withholding statement and a U.S. tax ID number must be provided on Line 6.

Part VI – Non-withholding Foreign Partnership, Simple Trust, or Grantor Trust: Non-withholding foreign partnerships, simple trusts, and grantor trusts must complete this section. In addition, the partnership or trust must provide the required documents and a withholding statement for each beneficial owner it represents.

Part VII – Certification: An authorized official of the foreign intermediary must sign and date the form.

Debt instrument elections

General information

Elections: Pursuant to Reg. §1.6045-1(n)(5)(ii), any election by a customer that is different from the broker default must be made in writing (including electronically) to the broker, and it must be made by the end of the calendar year. An election made to the broker does not constitute a taxpayer election to the IRS. Customers must consult with their tax advisor about how to notify the IRS of an election. A customer who provides the broker with an election that does not correspond with the election made with the IRS will require the customer to make adjustments (e.g., on IRS Form 8949) when completing a tax return to reconcile the information. Brokers must report Form 1099 information based on the broker default or other customer election made to the broker in place as of year-end.
Accrual periods: Pursuant to Reg. §1.6045-1(n)(8), brokers must use the same accrual period that is used to report any OID or stated interest on a Form 1099. "In any other situation, a broker must a semi-annual accrual period, or if a debt instrument provides for scheduled payments of principal or interest at regular intervals of less than six months over the entire term of the debt instrument, a broker must use an accrual period equal in length to this shorter interval." For transfer statements, however, the broker will need to provide the accrual amount that is applicable as of the date of transfer. This will require systems to calculate or receive from vendors accrual amounts on a daily basis.
ElectionBroker defaultCustomer election Taxpayer revocation Applicable levelCode, regulation, etc.Reference
Market discount – when recognizedDeferred to date of sale, redemption, maturity, or other disposition.Current inclusion as incomePermitted with the consent of the IRS Commissioner. See Revenue Procedures 92-67 and 99-49 for current recognition election.All debt acquired during the taxable year of the election and thereafter.IRC §1278(b)However, when an issuer makes a partial principal payment at the same time there is accrued market discount or accrued OID, the investor must recognize the accrued market discount and OID first before applying the remaining amount as a partial return of principal. See IRC §1278(a)(3). Market discount is treated as interest income, but it is not treated as interest subject to backup withholding or NRA withholding [IRC §1278(b)(1)].
Market discount – computation methodRatable accrual (a/k/a, straight line):

Total market discount at purchase / # of remaining days to maturity.
Constant interest rate – results in upward curve with lower amounts than straight line in the earlier years.

Calculation requires use of yield method similar to OID accrual calculations under IRC §1272(a), which are applied to the bond as if it had been originally issued on the date it was acquired by the taxpayer. The taxpayer's basis in the bond immediately after acquired is treated as the bond's issue price.
Election is irrevocable. See Revenue Procedures 92-67 and 99-49 for constant interest election.Instrument by instrument and it must be made for the earliest taxable year the debt instrument is owned (i.e., as of the date acquired).IRC §1276(b)(1) and (b)(2). 
Bond premium amortization on taxable debt.Amortize, based on constant yield method:

Amount must be determined based on constant yield method described in Reg. §1.171-2(a)(3).
Do not amortizePermitted with the consent of the CommissionerAll taxable debt held during the year elected and thereafter. Any premium applicable to prior years must be set aside for possible loss recognition at a later date.IRC §171; Reg. §1.171-4 (generally); Reg. §1.1275-7T for TIPs and TIIs.There is no comparable election for tax-exempt debt instruments. Brokers must amortize bond premium and adjust basis accordingly on tax-exempt debt instruments. Bond premium on non-taxable debt instruments cannot be used to offset taxable interest income.
Acquisition premium - calculation method.Fixed fraction method:

Total acquisition premium / total remaining OID
Not really an "election." Regulations state the constant yield method is required if the customer has made the "treat all interest as OID election" discussed below. Not applicableApplies to all instruments subject to OID reporting.IRC §1272(a)(7); Reg. §1.1272-2(b)(3), (4) and (5); Reg. §1.6045-1(n)(7)(iii)Only applies to OID bonds when the purchase price exceeds the adjusted issue price. There is no election to defer recognition of acquisition premium and offset the OID pursuant to IRC §1272(a)(7)(A), so the broker must adjust the cost basis. However, brokers may elect to provide the acquisition premium amount as supplemental information with the Form 1099-OID or offset the OID income and report only the net amount on the Form 1099-OID. This is advisable since the reporting of acquisition premium and bond premium is only applicable to covered securities.
Treat all interest as OID?No YesPermitted, with the consent of the CommissionerInstrument by instrument (taxable) and from the earliest taxable year owned (i.e., as of the date it is acquired).Reg. §1.1272-3Brokers are required to amortize acquisition premium on OID bonds. If the "all OID" election is made by the taxpayer, it effectively changes the method of computing the premium from the fraction method to a constant yield method. Also, making this election for a bond purchased at market discount assumes the elections to compute discount on a constant interest method and to recognize the income currently. This election incorporates all of the OID, market discount, bond premium, acquisition premium and interest payments (as applicable) into one OID amount and eliminates all other possible elections.
Converting interest and expense payments to US DollarsPeriod averageSpot rate on date of payment, credit or receiptPermitted, with the consent of the CommissionerAll taxable debt held by the taxpayer in the year of election and thereafter. Reg. §1.988-2(b)(2)(iii)(B) 

Why do I need to submit an IRS Form W-8 or W-9 to Wells Fargo?

The IRS requires us, as a U.S. payer or withholding agent, to obtain these tax forms for all of our clients. If we do not receive your proper forms, then we must withhold the maximum tax rate from reportable payments made to all accounts.

What do you use IRS Form W-8 and W-9 for?

We use these forms to identify your tax status and residency. For foreign clients, W-8 forms establish their foreign tax residency and treaty rate, if applicable. For U.S. citizen and resident alien clients, the W-9 form certifies that the taxpayer ID number provided is correct, whether or not they are subject to backup withholding, and what U.S. tax residency status they have.
Please be aware that a U.S. citizen or resident alien remains a U.S. taxpayer, regardless of how long they have ceased to reside in the U.S., until that person has filed all the necessary documentation with the IRS, Department of State, or Office of Homeland Security, as applicable.

Can I fax or send you a copy of an IRS Form W-8 or W-9?

For all W-8 forms, you must send us the originals. We cannot process faxed or copied W-8 forms. You may fax W-9 forms to Wells Fargo.

Does one IRS form cover multiple accounts?

Yes. If you have multiple accounts under the same legal name, you may submit one W-8 or W-9 for all of those accounts, provided the ownership is the same for each account.

Why are you requesting additional documentation after I have submitted an IRS Form W-8?

As part of our due diligence requirements, we must verify the completeness and accuracy of the W-8 form. For example, if an individual non-resident alien (NRA) customer shows a U.S. mailing address on a Form W-8BEN, that makes that form defective and creates the presumption the person is a resident alien. Therefore, if we have requested additional documentation, we are trying to cure a defect and need additional documentation to confirm the customer’s tax residency status or correctly apply treaty benefits. The additional documentation (copies of the Articles of Incorporation, Passport, etc.) allows us to meet our regulatory requirements as a withholding agent for the IRS.

Does the IRS Form W-8 or W-9 expire?

Generally, the W-8 form is valid for the year it is signed, plus three additional calendar years unless the information on the form changes during the three-year period. The W-9 form is valid indefinitely or until the information on the form changes.

What is your due diligence process for obtaining an expiring IRS Form W-8?

Before the end of the third calendar year in which the W-8 form expires, we will send non-U.S. clients a solicitation letter requesting that you complete and return to us a new W-8 form before the end of the third calendar year. This will ensure we do not withhold taxes from your payments for having an expired W-8 form at the beginning of the new calendar year.
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Foreign disregarded entity

 
Foreign disregarded entities cannot be corporations.
 
 
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Foreign private foundation

 
For example, a Canadian private foundation claiming a treaty benefit under Article XXI of the U.S.-Canada treaty and IRS Notice 99-47.
 
 
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Foreign international organization

 
Foreign international organizations must be included on list created by Executive Order.
 
 
 
1 Please be aware that Foreign Financial Institutions (FFIs) and Non-Financial Foreign Entities (NFFEs) will become subject to additional documentation and certification requirements for payments received after 12/31/2012 pursuant to the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act; however, the IRS has not yet issued any guidance or revised tax certification documentation.
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IRS Circular 230 Disclosure: Wells Fargo & Company, its affiliates, and its employees are not in the business of providing tax or legal advice to any person, affiliation, or entity unrelated to Wells Fargo & Company and its affiliates. Accordingly, any discussion of U.S. tax matters contained herein is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding tax penalties or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein.